WHO staff member tested positive for COVID-19 as Coronavirus death toll crosses 3,000

WHO staff member in Iran affected by coronavirus

A World Health Organization (WHO) staff member was tested positive for coronavirus in Iran, said Dr Tedros at a media briefing on Monday. Tedros, WHO director-general, made the opening remarks at the media briefing on COVID-19 on March 2 in Geneva, Switzerland. He said, "A WHO staff member in our Iran country office has now tested positive for COVID-19. He has mild disease."

A WHO team went to Iran to deliver supplies and support to the government. He further thanked Crown Prince Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan of the United Arab Emirates for the support.

Situation in Korea

Workers of Junjiang Industrial Limited Company produce medical masks in Yilong New District at Bouyei-Miao Autonomous Prefecture of Qianxinan in southwest China's Guizhou Province, Feb. 21, 2020. Medical supply companies in Yilong New District have been producing medical supplies at full capacity to support the fight against the novel coronavirus, or COVID-19. (Xinhua/Yang Wenbin/IANS) Xinhua/IANS

While talking about Korea, Tedros mentioned that most of the suspected cases in the country are coming from 5 known clusters instead of the whole community. It is relevant because this shows that surveillance measures are working and Korea's epidemic can still be contained. "Knowing and understanding your epidemic is the first step to defeating it," he said.

He further added that COVID-19 is a unique virus with unique features. It is not influenza which attacks your respiratory system like nose, throat and lungs. It is feasible to keep it under control and this should be the top priority of all the countries.

People's concern and questions

Tedros also answered frequently asked questions like if the virus spreading in my community if it is safe to hold an event or one should travel. He said that it varies depending upon where you live, how old you are, and how healthy you are. One should follow health advice provided by local health authorities. "WHO will continue to provide evidence-based guidance to help countries and individuals to assess and manage their risk, and make decisions," he said.

There have been more than 90,000 cases confirmed with over 3,000 deaths worldwide due to coronavirus. The number of cases in mainland China has been declining, whereas the number of cases outside China is nine times more. "The epidemics in the Republic of Korea, Italy, Iran and Japan are our greatest concern," said Tedros.

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